Bianca Mena

Dominican University

Bianca is a young woman whose values, service and actions have already brought hope and healing to local Chicago communities and to the world! She is committed to making a sustained difference in the world in her personal and professional life.

Bianca is trying to make a sustainable difference through political action. She participated in Just Advocacy Week, NETWORK Lobby in Washington, DC. and in Chicago she has organized for Workers' Rights, participating in the "Fight for $15" campaign to raise the minimum wage.
Bianca has worked to give educational opportunities to children who live in under-served communities. She has been a member of Jumpstart, a Corps Member for preschoolers in a literacy camp, a participant in Project SOAR in Chicago as a Nutrition Aide and done international service in Haiti and Tijuana.

She has worked to establish a safe space for immigrant students and allies on campus, served the Student Government Association, and advocates for students domestic violence with DASH - Domestic Abuse Stops Here.

She sees the significant worth of her education as something that will make her a person who can contribute to making a "positive change in the world."

Donna Carroll
Dominican University

Personal Statement

I became involved with the immigrant community early in my college experience. With other students, I worked to reestablish Dominican Immigrant Student Collective on campus: DISC - an organization that provides a safe space for immigrant students and allies. A primary goal is to educate faculty and students about the immigration system. We also educate about the humanity of immigrants and their right to be treated with dignity despite documentation status. We teach that undocumented immigrants are marginalized economically and socially which limits their quality of life. Having DISC active on campus demonstrates that immigrants are present and contributing to our society despite what many people believe. Besides DISC I have been active in urban education programs advancing educational opportunities for low income students. With the reestablishment of DISC, I have started partnerships with off-campus organizations that advocate for immigrant rights. With them, we ensure that students are not only learning about the immigration system but are being a part of community and policy change. I invite students to meet and rally for the Student Access Bill and for sanctuary cities. Both education and action pieces are integral parts to changing our community, city and nation.

Bianca Mena
Sociology/Criminology with a minor in Social Justice and Civic Engagement: Class of 2018
written 2017

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